KINSMAN, Ohio (WKBN) – Voters in Kinsman will decide on a levy that trustees say is necessary for the township to keep up with increasing expenses.

“We wouldn’t be asking for the money if we didn’t need it to survive,” said Trustee Greg Leonhard.

He points to shrinking local government funds and rising costs such as utilities at the township’s parks. Kinsman’s elected officials are turning to the voters for a five year, 1.5 mills current expenses levy that would bring money into the general fund.

“What we’re getting from the state of Ohio next year is like $27,000 or something like that. With the cost of everything going up, we just can’t make ends meet,” Leonhard said.

Leonhard says the township has made significant improvements in the last decade, a big one being its new sidewalks. It’s a project the township itself put very little money into.

“We wouldn’t have any of these sidewalks if it wasn’t for the generosity already of the residents of Kinsman Township, because the vast majority of the money that went for the matching funds for our grants was donations,” Leonhard said

Leonhard says the goal is to continue investing in Kinsman, but in order to keep providing its current services or have matching funds for grants, the levy is needed.

The levy would generate about $60,000 a year for the township. Trustees say they wouldn’t be turning to the voters if it wasn’t absolutely necessary.

“If it really wasn’t for the ARP funding that we got over the last two years, this is something we would have had to approach previously,” Leonhard said.

If approved, the levy would cost the owner of a $100,000 appraised value home an extra $53 a year.